Wednesday, May 26, 2010

A New Farm Stand Hand: Dominique

Introducing a girlfriend of mine, Sonoma County grown small farm fan and sustainable agriculture follower, Dominique. Evie and I are lucky that Dominique was finishing up school this spring and seeking practical experience in the field of farming, making the farm stand sales position a perfectly suitable environment for her to gain some new insights and exposures from some very experienced farmers.

Evie and I are still here too, but the farm stand is about to open full time for the season and we are going to divide the job amongst us to avoid overly long days and to share the work load. There is always plenty of work at a farm and while Evie is coming to the end of her treatments, she is still in recovery from all she has been through lately and will not be around as often as recent years, at least for now.

I met Dominique a couple of years ago when I returned to Sonoma County and was seeking farms and CSAs to work with. She and I worked together packing the CSA at First Light Farm in Sebastopol under the direction of Nathan Boone during the 2008-2009 season. When I left the packing crew out there, I left the CSA management position to Dominique who had the reliability, passion and competence to do a great job. Meanwhile, I worked for Tierra too and babbled on and on about all the incredible farming magic I was experiencing across the county. I was delighted that Dominique followed the sustainable farming trail out to Airport Boulevard and have subsequently gotten to know the farm bit by bit, finally stepping inside as a need for extra help emerged.

Since meeting her, she has always been out to find a way to find the closest thing to a homestead or sustainable living for her family including her beautiful young girl, Marisol. She is a lover of animals and care-taker of many members of her family. She has pursued and completed course work to obtain her degree in Sustainable Agriculture at the SRJC and is currently enrolled in a permaculture course. Appropriately, she is a strong believer in the issues we stand for as supporters and consumers of locally and sustainably grown food.

Please offer a warm welcome when you run into Dominique this season. Not only will she be a figure in the farm stand, helping us keep long and frequent hours to serve you as much as possible, but she will also be involved in packing and managing the CSA this season. Driven to learn and experience farm operations as someone who is truly interested in a finding a way to make a living this way, I know Dominique will put her heart and soul into her roles with Tierra. A chef for a husband (John, he currently works with Rosso Pizzeria), she has tips for use of vegetables that go beyond my realm of experience and ought to be an asset in helping people figure what to do with all the unique Tierra goodies.

We have only had one day together on the sales floor, but I was reminded why I so love working with this friend of mine. She is a hard worker! I was relieved as she stepped right in and just started, organized, informed and out to do the best job possible. I hope you all are able to enjoy more good stuff this season as a result of more good hands that facilitate us being able to do more good stuff for the farm and everyone involved! New energy is upon us and it is a great thing!

Thank you, Dominique.

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